First Featurette for OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL Goes Behind the Scenes of Sam Raimi’s Epic

by     Posted 1 year, 308 days ago


Disney has released the first featurette for director Sam Raimi’s Wizard of Oz prequel Oz the Great and Powerful.  It’s actually a fairly in-depth look behind the scenes of the film, as we’re treated to interviews with Raimi and many of the cast members including James Franco, Michelle Williams, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, and Zach Braff.  The focus is on how Raimi brought the world of Oz to life with the help of production designer Robert Stromberg and costume designer Gary Jones, and it’s clear that this was an absolutely massive production.  Jones and Raimi also provide insight into designing the iconic Wicked Witch, with Raimi noting that he wanted “a big, scary green witch,” instead of taking a more subtle approach to the character.

Hit the jump to watch the featurette.  If you missed any of Steve’s set visit coverage, check out 30 things to know about the film plus a video blog, and his interviews with Sam RaimiJames FrancoMichelle WilliamsZach Braff, and Joey King.  Oz the Great and Powerful opens in 3D on March 8th.

Teaser for the OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL Super Bowl Spot

by     Posted 1 year, 324 days ago


The original Daily Show wasn’t very good, but it had a joke I’ll never forget: “The Super Bowl is two hours of commercials occasionally interrupted by football.”  Even people who don’t care about football tune in to see the commercials, and the cost of airtime grows every year.  Plenty of studios will be paying to get TV spots in front of the year’s biggest audience.  We know that Fast & Furious 6 will be premiering its first trailer during the Super Bowl, and now Disney has released a sneak peek at what they have in store for Oz the Great and Powerful.  Hopefully, it’s better than what Disney did last year with John Carter where they just stuffed the movie inside the film’s title.  That’s how you throw away $2 million on a TV spot.

Hit the jump to check out the teaser, and come back Thursday when we’ll be posting Steve’s visit to the set along with interviews with director Sam Raimi and the cast.  The film stars James Franco, Michelle Williams, Mila Kunis, and Rachel WeiszOz the Great and Powerful opens in 3D on March 8th.

New Featurettes for OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL and MOONRISE KINGDOM, Plus New OZ Poster

by     Posted 1 year, 328 days ago


A couple of new featurettes have landed online, one for an upcoming movie and one for a 2012 film that’s vying for Oscar gold:

  • Oz the Great and Powerful – A new featurette for director Sam Raimi’s prequel to The Wizard of Oz shows quite a bit of new footage and does a nice job of introducing us to the cast of characters (James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz, and Michelle Williams).  I find it curious that they’re trying to keep the audience guessing as to which witches are good and which are bad, since the names are the same as the ones in the source material.  The film opens in 3D on March 7th.
  • Moonrise Kingdom – Hot off a Best Original Screenplay nomination for writers Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola, this new featurette focuses on the genesis of the project and the writing of the incredible script.  The film is currently available on DVD, Blu-ray, and VOD.

Hit the jump to watch the featurettes.


by     Posted 1 year, 343 days ago


The first TV spot for Jonathan Levin’s ZomRomCom Warm Bodies has debuted.  It’s a quick look at principal cast members Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer, as well as some flashes of a supporting character played by John Malkovich.  Buzz has been positive so far, but you can decide for yourself when the picture opens on February 1st.

We also have a new TV spot for Sam Raimi’s Oz the Great and Powerful which clues audiences in to who’s on whose side by pointing out the good, bad wise and powerful characters.  There’s not a lot here in terms of new footage, but the opening release date of March 8th is still two months away.  Oz the Great and Powerful stars James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams.  Hit the jump to see the new TV spots.


by     Posted 1 year, 350 days ago


New TV spots have been released for Beautiful Creatures and Oz the Great and PowerfulBeautiful Creatures is a supernatural love story centering on Lena Duchannes (Alice Englert) a “caster” (a.k.a. a witch), her relationship with Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich), and her dread at being chosen for good or evil.  This TV spot sells the love-angle, but I can’t help but being slightly intrigued by the supernatural element of the story.  As for Oz the Great and Powerful, the TV spots are about ringing in the New Year with Sam Raimi‘s Wizard of Oz prequel.

Hit the jump to check out the TV spots.  Beautiful Creatures opens February 13th.  Oz the Great and Powerful opens in 3D on March 8th.


by     Posted 1 year, 355 days ago


How do you make a Jason Bourne film without Matt Damon? There are a couple of options: you can remake the first film, or you can spin-off in a new direction.  What’s most frustrating about The Bourne Legacy is that it takes a third option, which is to pretend that Damon is actually a character in this world, but he’s just not on screen.  Perhaps Universal was stuck between a rock and a hard place. They couldn’t kill Damon off-camera, and they probably hope he’ll come back for more, so instead they brought in Jeremy Renner for a story that runs in parallel to the end of The Bourne Ultimatum, but doesn’t do anything to move the franchise forward.  It is also pretty bad. Our review of the Blu-ray of The Bourne Legacy follows after the jump.

New York Film Critics Circle Names ZERO DARK THIRTY Best Film; Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, and Matthew McConaughey Win Acting Awards

by     Posted 2 years, 14 days ago


The New York Film Critics Circle has kicked the awards race off in earnest, and the love was spread primarily between Zero Dark Thirty and Lincoln.  The drama about the hunt for Osama bin Laden took home Best Picture, Best Director for Kathryn Bigelow, and Best Cinematographer, while Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln was awarded Best Screenplay, Best Actor, and Best Supporting Actress.  The group also had a couple of left field choices with the Best Supporting Actor award going to Matthew McConaughey for Magic Mike (alright, alright, alright) and Best Actress going to Rachel Weisz for The Deep Blue Sea.  McConaughey winning the trophy was a pleasant surprise, but Weisz’s win is a tad baffling.

Hit the jump to check out the full list of winners, and click here to peruse our recent Oscar Preview features.

New Trailer for Sam Raimi’s OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

by     Posted 2 years, 33 days ago


A new trailer for director Sam Raimi‘s Oz the Great and Powerful has been released.  Watching this trailer, I can’t help but be confused as to why three witches (Mila KunisRachel WeiszMichelle Williams) need the help of the Wizard (James Franco) simply because we’re going to the lame plot device of “the prophecy”.  Theadora comments that she doesn’t have a broom, but–and correct me if I’m wrong–a witch is a woman who can do magic.  So why does the entire kingdom of Oz depend on one guy showing up when there are three ladies who already have magical powers?  As for the look of the movie, I’m seeing lots of special effects but almost none of Raimi’s personality.  Billed as “From the Director of the Spider-Man  Trilogy” and “The Producer of Alice in Wonderland“, Oz looks like it’s more from the latter.

Hit the jump to watch the new trailer.  The film also stars Zach Braff, and Abigail Spencer.  Oz the Great and Powerful opens on March 8, 2013.

New Triptych Poster and Images for Sam Raimi’s OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL

by     Posted 2 years, 34 days ago


The marketing campaign for director Sam Raimi’s fantasy adventure Oz the Great and Powerful has been curiously ramping up as of late, as we’ve recently seen two new posters and a batch of new images.  We knew that the one-sheets made up two-thirds of a triptych poster, and now that full banner has been revealed in addition to a couple more new images.  The pic is a prequel to the classic The Wizard of Oz, and centers on a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics (James Franco) who finds himself transported to Oz and drawn into a battle between the three witches Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams).  The full banner and images show off even more of Raimi’s colorful world (though the photoshop on the poster is still a tad spotty), and I’m eager to see more footage from the film.  Hopefully a new trailer drops soon.

Hit the jump to check out the poster and images.  The film also stars Zach Braff and Abigail SpencerOz the Great and Powerful opens on March 8, 2013.

6 New Images from Sam Raimi’s OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL Starring James Franco

by     Posted 2 years, 35 days ago


Disney has released six new images from Sam Raimi‘s upcoming fantasy-adventure film Oz the Great and Powerful.  The pic is a prequel to the classic The Wizard of Oz, and centers on Oscar Diggs (James Franco), a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics, who finds himself transported to Oz and drawn into a battle between the three witches Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams).  One of these new images shows Diggs making his way through “Chinatown”, where everything is made of china and has been broken by the Wicked Witch and her army.  Diggs puts some of the pieces together and makes the China Girl (voiced by Joey King) who decides to come with him on his journey.

Hit the jump to check out the images.  Oz the Great and Powerful opens in 3D on March 8, 2013.

New Poster for OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL Reveals a Wicked Witch

by     Posted 2 years, 47 days ago


A new poster for director Sam Raimi’s fantasy film Oz the Great and Powerful has been released.  The pic is a prequel to the classic The Wizard of Oz, and centers on a small-time circus magician with dubious ethics (James Franco) who finds himself transported to Oz and drawn into a battle between the three witches Theodora (Mila Kunis), Evanora (Rachel Weisz) and Glinda (Michelle Williams).  Appropriately, today’s new poster reveals the film’s green-skinned Wicked Witch, played by Weisz.  I’m absolutely loving the whimsical imagery that Raimi has cooked up so far, and this poster is a great tease of the film’s darker side.

Hit the jump to check out the poster.  The film also stars Zach Braff and Abigail Spencer.  Oz the Great and Powerful opens on March 8th, 2013.

Terrence Malick’s TO THE WONDER Leaves Rachel Weisz, Barry Pepper, Michael Sheen and Amanda Peet on the Cutting Room Floor

by     Posted 2 years, 110 days ago


If you’ve got a recognizable name like the folks pictured above, you’d think that once you sign onto a project, you can expect to see your face on the big screen.  That’s not the case when Terrence Malick is the director.  Although Rachel Weisz, Barry Pepper, Amanda Peet and Michael Sheen all filmed scenes for the Badlands director’s film, To the Wonder, all of them were left on the cutting room floor. The film screens this coming Sunday at the Venice Film Festival before moving on to TIFF next week.  Hit the jump for why the actors’ scenes were cut and who is left in the finished film.


by     Posted 2 years, 128 days ago


Considering the 2012 election cycle is currently in full swing, I feel compelled to lend my endorsement to a truly worthy candidate: The Campaign. As someone who unashamedly enjoys a majority of Will Ferrell‘s manchild cinematic escapades, I expected to like the pic. That said, I’m now putting The Campaign just behind Anchorman, Step Brothers, and Elf in my personal “Ferrell Top 4″: something I didn’t expect to be writing the day after seeing it. Sure, the film borrows a ton from Talladega Nights and Ferrell’s take on President Bush. It also manages to combine relevance, irreverence, and humor in a way many mainstream comedies can only promise and ultimately fail to deliver on.

Political endorsements aside, this week’s Top 5 contains a considerable share of The Bourne Legacy coverage, Joss Whedon returning to write/direct The Avengers 2, The Campaign interviews with Will Ferrell, Zach Galifianakis, and more, the first trailer and new poster for the Red Dawn remake, and the news that some of Bane’s backstory was left on The Dark Knight Rises‘ cutting room floor. A brief recap and link to each awaits after the jump.

Producer Patrick Crowley Talks THE BOURNE LEGACY, Introducing Jeremy Renner’s Aaron Cross to Audiences and Reflects on Past BOURNE Movies

by     Posted 2 years, 130 days ago


Opening tomorrow is writer/director Tony Gilroy’s The Bourne Legacy.  For those unfamiliar with the franchise reboot, this time around, a government task force led by Edward Norton‘s character is assassinating all their genetically-modified assets to prevent another Bourne situation.  However, one member of the program, Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner), manages to escape with a scientist (Rachel Weisz), and the two go on the run for their lives.  The film also stars Oscar Isaac, Joan Allen, David Strathairn, Albert Finney, Stacy Keach, Scott Glenn, Corey Stoll, and Donna Murphy.  For more on the film, here are five clips.

During the recent Los Angeles press day, I did an exclusive interview with producer Patrick Crowley.  If you’re a fan of the Bourne films and want to hear some great behind the scenes stories about all four movies, you’re in the right place.  During our extended conversation we talked about the making of Bourne Legacy, did they ever consider 3D, Easter Eggs, test screenings, will future Bourne movies have Bourne in the title, coming up with new and exciting action scenes, deleted scenes, reshoots,  and so much more.  Hit the jump for what he had to say.


by     Posted 2 years, 130 days ago


Director Paul Greengrass created what it meant to be a “Bourne” movie with The Bourne Supremacy and The Bourne Ultimatum.  If the James Bond movies are girls, gadgets, cars, and supervillains, then Bourne was going to be about intense action scenes, desperate chases, paranoia, and political commentary.  Sadly, Greengrass did not return to the Bourne franchise, and co-writer and director Tony Gilroy has set the series back with the flabby and forgettable The Bourne Legacy.  Gilroy attempts to write his own set of rules by playing against a traditional three-act structure, which is fine in theory, but in practice it creates a film that’s constantly losing momentum, and never sure where to focus its energy.  The movie’s saving grace is Jeremy Renner, who gets to be in the mold of Jason Bourne but find new strengths and weaknesses that set him apart from the eponymous spy.  Sadly, the rest of The Bourne Legacy never follows Renner’s lead to find a fresh direction while still retaining what worked about the past two movies.

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